Shine a light on City Host Rosie - Dusky Blue Skies

Shine a light on the City Hosts: Rosie

Regan’s interview with City Host Rosie on 30 December 2021, as part of the Shine a light on the City Hosts series.

What’s your name?

City Host Rosie (R): My name is Rosie and I am a City Host for the Coventry City of Culture Trust.

Are you local to Coventry?

R: I have always lived in Coventry, mostly in the Holbrooks area.

Do you do any other volunteer work?

R: I have volunteered in different capacities throughout my life. I have been a scout leader for children, aged 6-18. I have worked in a community youth group, and I am currently a volunteer for Warwickshire Search and Rescue as a search technician and a medical lead.

How did you become a City Host, Rosie?

R: I have a friend, Alfie who has been a city host from the start of the City of Culture. He introduced me to the idea of being a city host, as I didn’t have much knowledge about who they are or what they do. As I got to know more about the city host role, and I became aware that Scoob (Alfie’s companion) was involved, then becoming a city host really started to interest me. I did some research online and signed up.

Rosie volunteering as a city host, 8 January 2022

What do you enjoy about being a city host?

R: I enjoy getting to know new people and getting to know what events are happening. I love the opportunities to talk to people and learn about how things have changed over the years.

What’s been your favourite city of culture event, so far?

R: My favourite event so far is Glides, because it’s a great experience for both the public and hosts. I and my friend Alfie have both gone skating twice ourselves. It is a very enjoyable experience and very well designed I would very much go again if it happened again next year.

Have you encouraged anyone else to become a city host?

R: I recently discussed my role as city host with my oldest sister and shared with her the events going on in the centre as part of the city of culture. She was interested in ice skating (Glides), but she was sceptical about safety. However, after reassurance, she signed up and attended an enjoyable session with her friends.

As a city host,  what sort of questions do you get asked regularly?

R: The question I most get asked about on shift is how popular the events are, and how safe the Glides event is for all types of people.

Have you been asked anything unusual or been told any interesting stories?

R: I had a lovely discussion with a lady one evening, who was telling me it was her first time being in Coventry since she was 13 years old. She said she remembered when there was only one cathedral, and the University wasn’t even thought of. She spent many years visiting the old cathedral before it got destroyed during the war, and she said to her it was a magical place.

Rosie volunteering at Coventry Cathedral, 8 January 2022
Rosie volunteering at Coventry Cathedral, 8 January 2022

Is there anything else you would like to share about your experience?

R: I believe more people should get involved with the city of culture as a city host. Our volunteering role has many opportunities to learn about Coventry’s history, culture, diversity, and training opportunities for self-development. Being part of the city host family gives others the chance to share and experience it all with you.

Read more interviews from the shine a light on the city hosts series

Alfie and Scooby-Doo

“I would say this experience and being a city host volunteer has definitely helped with my Autism. It’s made me come out of my shell a lot more, and also given me the confidence to go on to volunteer at the Commonwealth Games next year, hopefully.”

City host Lawrence

“My favourite event was the Tile Hill community circus. It was great to see families engaging with artists and performers, and even remote controlled wheelie bins. There was a lovely atmosphere.”

City host Regan

Interviewer and photographer for the Shine a light series.

Would you like to volunteer in Coventry?

Volunteer Action Coventry has an online database offering a wide range of volunteer roles. Or you could visit one of their drop-in sessions on Trinity street to chat about current volunteering opportunities, activities and projects available.

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